Global Science Report is a feature from the Center for the Study of Science, where we highlight one or two important new items in the scientific literature or the popular media. For broader and more technical perspectives, consult our monthly “Current Wisdom.”
A pre-print of a soon to be published paper in the Journal of Asthma and Clinical Immunology describes a study conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center making this provocative finding:
Taking the United States as a whole, living in an urban neighborhood is not associated with increased asthma prevalence.
It’s a radical finding. The study upends more than half a century of research that assumed outdoor air pollution in cities was to blame for higher asthma rates—a hypothesis repeatedly used by EPA regulators to justify the agency’s regulations.
Perrone goes on to explain:
For years, environmentalists and regulators have cited childhood asthma as an excuse for ever-stricter pollution rules. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), for instance, uses asthma as a pretext for nearly every “clean air” regulation issued since the 1970s.
But what if the assumed link between air pollution and childhood asthma doesn’t actually exist?
New research questions the long-held wisdom on asthma and air pollution, casting doubt over the scientific basis for EPA’s expansive regulatory agenda….
The study still points to air pollution as a cause for asthma, only it’s indoor air pollution—think second hand smoke, rodents, mold, etc.—that may be the main culprit.
This counters EPA’s asthma pretext for “clean air” regulations, as well as their regulations on climate change.